Channel Walk

Karakoram Highway

A three- or four-hour walk along the main water channels from Ultar Nala is a good way to see Hunza at its best. Try to avoid the delicate side channels.

Climb past the polo ground, bearing left beside the channel there. The path goes down the valley all the way to Hyderabad Nala. There, scramble down to the link road and turn back towards Karimabad. You can soon drop to a lower channel that goes all the way back. You can go right on around Karimabad, past Mominabad to the headworks behind Baltit Fort, although the channel goes underground for part of the way.

Both these channels and the newer, higher channels distribute water from Ultar. There are seven channels running to the west and five to the east from Ultar Nala. The velvety appearance of Ultar water is the result of minute flakes of mica.

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1. Baltit Fort

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The oldest parts of Baltit Fort date from the 13th century. Over the years more houses and towers were added, and it was fortified. To cement an alliance…